International Homeless Animals Day
August 20, 2022
(Fun for the family, friends, and the shelter animals will love it too!)
Dogust 1st has come and gone.
If you are not aware of the significance of that date, it’s the universal birthday for shelter dogs and is celebrated in the United States on August 1st.
Exact birthdays are typically unknown for homeless animals.
Dogust 1st honors all shelter dogs.
This celebration started back in 2008, initiated by the staff at North Shore Animal League America.
Who doesn’t love a good celebration?
Many celebrations become traditions.
New or old, they have a strong place in our lives and hearts.
Holiday traditions are very important to us.
Many families and friends around the world share common family traditions which help people bond with those they love.
How about adding another wonderful, fun tradition to those you already have?
Saturday, August 20, 2022, is International Homeless Animals Day (IHAD).
This celebration falls on every third Saturday in August around the world.
It’s a day to raise awareness and find homes for the companion animals in a shelter’s care.
The official slogan for this day is, “Become part of the solution.”
Many shelters, on this day, have adoption specials, live music, treats to give away, food trucks, and many family fun activities.
No doubt, you already have long-standing traditions you have been celebrating for years.
Attending your local shelter’s IHAD event gives you the freedom to add a new tradition for your family.
Did you know that: Estimates show that 6.5 million companion animals are taken to U.S. shelters each year?
The split is even with cats and dogs.
The History of IHAD
IHAD has been around for quite a while.
In the late 1800s, animal protectionists saw that the lives of animals were vulnerable and in need of protection.
Anti-cruelty laws were established and organizations to oversee these laws were set up.
Increased protection was given to house pets such as dogs and cats in the 20th century.
Did you know that: Only about 10% of animals taken to shelters are spayed or neutered?
In the 1960s and 1970s, animal welfare groups focused on adoption, fostering, and the prevention of animal suffering.
Many animal shelters shifted their focus from being shelters which temporarily housed homeless animals to proactively promoting pet adoption and controlling the homeless pet population.
Did you know that: An estimated 25% of all dogs taken to local shelters are purebreds?
In 1992, the International Society for Animal Rights (ISAR) established International Homeless Animals Day to spread awareness of the conditions of homeless animals and to help make their lives better.
Did you know that: There are approximately 70 million stray animals living on the streets in the U.S.?
Studies have shown that an altruistic act is connected to positive mental effects.
Families can benefit from these effects by giving back to the community.
You can observe IHAD several ways and cash in on these great benefits.
The following are just a few things you can do to “become part of the solution.”
1. Donate to a shelter.
They can always use our financial support.
2. Spay and neuter you pets.
Statistics show that an unspayed female dog can produce 16 puppies in a year.
This is one reason shelters become overpopulated.
3. Adopt or foster.
If you can’t commit to a permanent adoption, fostering is a great way to support shelters by helping one dog or cat get relief from shelter life.
Even if you can’t adopt a pet just now, you can help make life better for animals in your community by volunteering with your local shelter.
Most shelters are run almost entirely by volunteers.
Volunteers are an amazing and talented group of people who donate their time to do whatever is needed.
5. Make wishes come true.
Check out a shelter’s wish list and donate to their needs.
One of the shelters I support needs bleach and laundry detergent.
Small need for us, big need for shelters who clean cages on a daily basis.
New and gently used linens (towels, blankets, bath mats, etc.) are always in need.
Food is also a primary need.
Many items on shelter wish lists can be found on Chewy, Inc. and Amazon.
More sophisticated items are also needed.
Some shelters need microchip scanners which are used to help get dogs and cats back to their owners.
IHAD is important in many ways, including:
1. IHAD raises money for shelters.
Attending an event or donating to support the cause keeps shelters running.
Money raised by IHAD is invaluable.
2. IHAD gives animals a voice.
Raising awareness to the plight of homeless animals gives them a voice.
3. IHAD celebrates pet adoptions.
The best way to clear out a shelter is by adopting.
If you go to an event and can’t adopt, the look on the faces of families who are going home with a shelter pet will make you smile big time.
Traditions can be anything fun you and your family already enjoy doing.
They nurture the spirit.
They develop family bonding.
You can also have fun starting your own event.
An IHAD event is just the ticket.
Some communities have adopt-a-thons, microchip clinics, and spay and neuter clinics.
There are online videos from around the world celebrating IHAD.
You can get some great ideas from these videos.
Small community events can raise awareness and money for the cause.
We are an international community and together, we can help our shelters.
If you can’t make it personally to an animal shelter this year on August 20, the following are dates for future celebrations.
INTERNATIONAL HOMELESS ANIMALS’ DAY DATES
Year Date Day
2022 August 20 Saturday
2023 August 19 Saturday
2024 August 17 Saturday
2025 August 16 Saturday
Celebrate IHAD with The Humane Society of St. Lucie County if you live on the Treasure Coast.
Check with your local shelter and see if they have any specific activities on International Homeless Animals Day.
If not, you can still go to your local shelter on August 20 and see what’s happening.
If you can’t schedule a trip on IHAD, shelters will welcome you any day they are open.
Have fun and make memories.
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